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Festung by Rainald Goetz

Contributed by Philipp Messner on Aug 19th, 2019. Artwork published in .

    The original paperback edition of Rainald Goetz’ play Festung published by the German publishing house Suhrkamp comes with a book jacket – a rather unusual feature for the edition suhrkamp series. With its reduction to bold colors and all caps Twentieth Century Extra Bold it follows the design principles Willy Fleckhaus (1925–1983) applied to some covers he created for Suhrkamp in the 1970s.

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    • Twentieth Century

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    3 Comments on “Festung by Rainald Goetz”

    1. Aug 19th, 2019  11:50 am

      Does anyone know more about the origin of Futura No. 2? This font family is offered by URW in ten styles (incl. two small cap fonts).

      In particular, I’m wondering about the Extra Bold style used here. Futura Extra Bold is not part of the original Futura series designed by Paul Renner for Bauer. It was added by Edwin W. Shaar for Intertype in 1952. URW’s website mentions “Designer: Paul Renner, (Esselte Letraset), 1993, (1932)”. And indeed a 1990 Letraset catalog shows a Futura Extra Bold with the same distinguishing features: a G with vertical section at the right, a Q with a bar that doesn’t cross the counter, and a J and g with (almost) vertically cut terminals. These details are different in Intertype’s version.

      Did this variant really originate at Letraset, and if yes, who did it, and when? Mike Daines doesn’t include it in his list of Letraset Originals. A variant with the same features is shown in a catalog by Headliners from 1978, as part of their neo-Futura series. I have to assume that URW’s 1993 date refers to their digitization.

    2. Aug 19th, 2019  5:02 pm

      D’oh! “Futura No. 2” appears to be URW’s name for Twentieth Century, which is Lanston Monotype’s copy of Futura. Mac McGrew mentions that Twentieth Century Ultrabold was drawn by Sol Hess in 1941 (hence preceding Intertype’s Futura Extra Bold). Phototype versions of this face appear in Typeshop’s 1973 catalog and in Phil’s Photo catalog from 1980 under the name Futura Extra Bold. Photo-Lettering’s adaptation is shown in the One Line catalog (1971) as Futura Ultra Bold. I’ve adjusted the typeface credit.

    3. Aug 19th, 2019  7:16 pm

      Thank you for this clarification, Florian. It’s not without irony then that Linotype/Monotype GmbH markets the font under the name Futura No. 2.

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